After eight days of elusive victory, Timor-Leste finally got its first medal for the 30th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games on Sunday.
Filipinos and Timorese are celebrating together after athlete Jose Barreto Da Silva Quintas finally brought a medal for Timor Leste in the semifinals of the men’s boxing flyweight (52kg) event.
Despite losing against Thailand’s Ammarit Yaodam, netizens are celebrating because Timor-Leste was the only country that participated in SEA Games without any medal a week since the event started.
During the match, Filipino spectators can be seen cheering for Quintas.
Filipinos are now relieved that Timor-Leste will not go home empty-handed now.
Several days ago, Timor-Leste has gone viral on social media after netizens expressed their support to the representatives of the said country.
Netizens pointed out that SEA Games is about unity and not about having competition with each other that’s why they’re also cheering for Timor-Leste to finally have a medal.
“I’m a Filipino by heart and soul… I support my Filipino Athletes.. but one thing that captures my heart, its the fighting spirits of Timor-Leste (East Timor) that really showcase the true sportsmanship even without the medals, I admire they’re desire and passion to still play continuously,” netizen Wilven Allere said.
“Together with the thousands of Filipino sports fans, We/I salute #TIMORLESTE Athletes and all those delegates & athletes from the 10 SouthEastAsia countries who compete with their heads up high and without complaints and play with their big hearts with a smile,” he added.
People of Timor-Leste didn’t forget to thank the Philippines for their support.
“The hospitality is amazing, everyone is so nice,” a Timor-Leste representative said.
Another Timorese also pointed out that the Philippines is one of the countries helped them to gain independence.
“When we are fighting for independence, the government of the Filipinos supports us,” he said.
The Vice President of the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Timor Leste Vicente Carvalho da Silva also thanked the Filipinos for their support.
“I am very happy for your help,” De Silva said who’s also the chef de mission of Timor-Leste for SEA Games.
“All of the Philippines’ hospitality for my country, Once again thank you very much for your help,” he added.
This day is considered as a double celebration for Filipino SEA Games fans after Philippine Olympic Committee chair Steve Hontiveros declared that the country is the overall champion of the sporting event.